Long before Lehman Bros. nearly cratered the global financial system, before Citibank and Bank of America became too big to fail, before a J.P. Morgan trader lost billions seemingly overnight, and before a sitting president publicly disparaged "fat cat" bankers, Americans have hated banks and the people who run them. Former journalist J.R. Moehringer, the author of the memoir "The Tender Bar" and co-author of "Open," by Andre Agassi, harnesses that persistent antipathy in his debut novel, "Sutton," a gripping yarn about the real-life bank robber Willie Sutton.
"Sutton" is rigorously researched and colorfully reimagined, and its protagonist is shockingly lovable. Sutton was, after all, the convict who, when asked why he robbed banks responded (probably apocryphally): "That's where the money is." Moehringer's novel is built on a foundation of solid facts, and his timing is impeccable. There couldn't possibly be a better moment for a sympathetic narrative about a one-man Occupy movement who did more than protest against pernicious banks.
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